Why Do We Vote as We Do?

Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

“Conservative” and “liberal” explain very little.

Jason Weeden and Robert Kurzban, The Hidden Agenda of the Political Mind: How Self-Interest Shapes our Opinions and Why We Won’t Admit it, Princeton University Press, 2014, 363 pp., $29.95.

Why do we vote the way we do? The answer is obvious: We vote for politicians who promise to do what’s in our interests. Surprisingly, the obvious is not obvious to political scientists, many of whom think that we vote according to principles or because of party or religious affiliation. The Hidden Agenda of the Political Mind claims to strip away these pretences and lay bare the self-interested motives of voters. The authors do have some interesting insights, but despite their claims of ruthless objectivity they have obvious and unforgivable blind spots–in exactly the areas we would expect.

HiddenAgenda

Personal interests

Jason Weeden and Robert Kurzban, both academics, have a view of human nature that is based on recent work by such authors as Jonathan Haidt. They write that because “human minds are designed for spin,” most of our desires are unconscious, and the reasons we give for our actions are “socially attractive veneers.” There is much to say for this view; motives–even our own–can be murky. People often claim high motives for themselves and low ones for others: “I want to be a lawyer so I can work for social justice; my law-school classmates just want to get rich.”

Politics, however, is usually much more straightforward. It is an attempt to rearrange America in ways that benefit specific groups. Blacks want more handouts and Jews want to stop school prayer. Rich people want lower taxes and white people want less immigration. Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban therefore go too far when they write that “in our view all sides typically seek to advance their interests and are hypocritical in the way they present their views.” They even write that it is unacceptable “to talk truthfully about the fact that politicians try to appeal to voters’ interests,” but this lets them claim that their own analysis is a brave assault on taboos.

What is useful in this book is the recognition that voter interests reliably reflect specific demographic traits such as wealth, brains, education, sex, race, erotic orientation, religious fervor, and immigrant status, and that different combinations of these traits lead to different voter preferences that don’t fall neatly into conservative/liberal categories.

This is why the two major parties are both uneasy coalitions. Unlike parliamentary systems in which voters may have a dozen parties to choose from, Americans have to pick from just two. This means a voter has to dig through a mishmash of positions to decide whether the Democrats or the Republicans even roughly represent his overall interests.

It is not a mistake to think of these two coalitions as generally to the left and to the right of center, but the authors argue that there are not that many Americans whose opinions are consistently to the left or the right. Many commentators think that if you know someone’s position on one controversial issue–abortion, for example–you know his positions on everything else, from racial preferences to military spending. However, the authors point out that this kind of consistency is true only for upscale white people. Since most commentators fit this profile and since they don’t know any other kind of people, they think everyone is predictably and consistently liberal/Democratic or conservative/Republican.

Not so, say Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban, and the further down the economic scale you go, the more inconsistent Americans are. A famous example is black resistance to homosexual marriage. White Democrats, who think of blacks as reliable allies in the liberal cause, don’t actually understand blacks. Blacks vote Democrat because they want more handouts and racial preferences; not because they are “liberal” in any principled way.

At least blacks have a party that looks out for them; lower-class whites don’t. As the authors point out, Republicans attract these people because the party is only lukewarm on immigration and race preferences, but Republicans also want to cut back on handouts, which some lower-class whites want. Democrats are for handouts but fawn over non-whites and immigrants.

The authors admit that given this choice it is no wonder many lower-class whites don’t vote. Their mix of liberal/conservative views would draw them to a populist/nationalist party such as the Front National in France, but our rigid two-party system leaves them with nothing.

Sex

The authors offer an interesting analysis of how personal views about sex often drive political positions on “social” issues such as abortion, school prayer, homosexual marriage, and drug laws. A lot of Americans want to spend 10 to 15 years having recreational sex with many partners before they settle down and have children. They want society to accept fornication, and they certainly don’t want to be forced to have unwanted children. They therefore want easy access to contraceptives, and a backstop for when contraception fails: abortion. People who live like this also want tolerance for homosexuals because that usually comes with tolerance for fornication. They also favor loose laws on booze and marijuana because they make sex more likely.

A lot of other Americans don’t like any of this. They are family oriented, and believe sex outside of marriage undermines families. The authors concede that they are right about that: The more sex partners people have before they marry, the more likely they are to divorce, whereas when two virgins marry their chances of divorce are a very low 15 percent. Sexually conservative people don’t want to lift the sanctions on fornication or adultery. A girl asking her boyfriend to wait until they are married may be asking the impossible if there are plenty of other girls who are willing to do it right now. Also, people who build their lives on the ideal of stable marriage fear that a social atmosphere of sport sex threatens that ideal. They want to make promiscuity less likely by making it more risky–by banning abortion and making contraceptives hard to get.

The anti-fornication crowd also tends to be religious. According to Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban, there is a very strong negative correlation between church going and number of sex partners. They write that churches can almost be seen as support groups for people who practice conservative, family-oriented sex. That is why views on sex are closely tied to views on prayer in school.

It is common to think that most people absorb their parents’ religion, and that religion determines views on sex. The authors suggest otherwise. They are aware of the extent to which genes influence this kind of behavior, and even cite longitudinal studies suggesting that it doesn’t make much difference how you are reared; promiscuous people will leave the church, and people who are family-oriented will find a church even if they weren’t reared in one.

The authors argue that both sides of the debate hide their real motives. Pro-abortion people don’t say, “I want to screw around until I’m 30 and I’ll be damned if I’m going to have a child just because I knocked up a drunk stranger.” Instead, they invent a “right to privacy” and prate about “a woman’s right to control her body.” They throw away their privacy on Facebook, and are perfectly happy for a woman to give up control of her body in the name of mandatory seat-belt laws or health insurance, or bans on smoking and giant soft drinks.

The other side is dishonest, too. It claims that the Bible condemns abortion, whereas the Bible never mentions it. It also claims life begins at conception, but it also often permits abortion in cases of rape or incest. If life begins at conception how do you justify killing a fetus even if there was rape or incest? Presumably, no one would kill a two-year-old just because his father was a rapist. Even though people routinely vote their interests, they may hide their interests.

Many political scientists reportedly think that party affiliation is like religion: People stumble into it early in life, and then mold their politics to the party line. One does hear of people who are firm Democrats because their parents were firm Democrats, but Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban think that is unusual. People usually start with an issue about which they feel passionately–whether it is abortion or tax rates–and start voting for candidates that promise what they want. If they then get active in party politics in any way, they start spending time with people who support the party for other reasons, and may then adjust their less-strongly-held views to match those of their friends. Their initial partisan impulse comes from conviction, and that conviction is based on personal interests.

Other policies

Let us see how demographic characteristics tilt people’s interests on other political questions. Here is a table that reflects what different groups think about immigration. Except for the “All” category, which includes everyone, the groups are ranked, top to bottom, according to how likely they are to want more immigration. It’s worth looking carefully at the group descriptions to see how the authors have divided up the population. By “human capital” they mean brains and education. The bold number reflects the median view of each group.

GroupsImmigration

Not surprisingly, immigrants like immigration, but even for them the median opinion is to leave current levels unchanged. The group that thinks most like immigrants is brainy, educated non-Christians and homosexuals. The authors, who refer to this group as “heathens,” note that Jews, Buddhists, Hindus, and homosexuals–especially when they have lots of “human capital”–think so similarly that it makes sense to lump them together.

The other groups show that whites, in general, want less immigration, and that whites with the least education and brains want the least. This makes sense. Upscale whites, even if they tilt towards immigration control, might want to hire cheap Mexicans, whereas working-class whites have both racial and economic reasons to keep Mexicans out.

The authors note that the country as a whole–the All category–tilts pretty strongly towards cutting immigration, but the country doesn’t get what it wants. Minorities flout the majority will.

Here is another example of the same thing. This table shows what different groups think about racial preferences for non-whites. Here, the All category’s median opinion is “strongly oppose,” with only 17 percent of Americans showing any support at all. Blacks like race preferences more than anyone else, but even for them, a majority is against them. Even middle-class heathens (the group second from the bottom) are overwhelmingly against race preferences, despite being liberal on many other questions.

AAChart

This means that on the two issues most important to whites–immigration and race preferences–policy is squarely against their interests. The authors concede that laws on abortion and school prayer also go againsts majority interests. Why? The authors pat themselves on the back for laying bare the naked interests of Americans and explaining how interests drive policy. If interests drive policy, why does their vaunted analysis fail on these four important issues, all of which are important to whites?

And why is it that when policy runs counter to majority interests, it always veers off in a liberal direction? Why are there no policies that are more conservative than the majority wants? The authors–who cheerfully admit to being heathens–say it is because elites make policy, and elites, whether Democrat or Republican, tilt Left. There is some truth in this, but when it comes to immigration and race preferences, the majority will is trampled mainly because whites are forbidden to organize along racial lines the way everyone else does. Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban fail to see that.

What they do see are ghosts of policies that have been dead for 70 years. This book claims that lower-class Christian heterosexual whites “hold group-based issue preferences that seek to help people in their own groups and hold back people not in their own group.” This is understandable because “people with less human capital do better when advantages are given to their own groups and other groups are held back.” That’s right: Drooling rednecks are politicking to hold back the darkies. Rednecks vote Republican because the party favors “anti-meritocratic advantage for traditionally dominant groups.”

Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban pass this nonsense off with a straight face and without a scrap of data. They also claim that smart “heathens” like themselves live in constant fear that the white, Christian, heterosexual majority will rise up and write anti-meritocratic rules to keep them down. It would be hard to imagine a more sweeping–but fashionable–set of prejudices.

This is especially shocking in a book that claims to be immune to prejudice and willing to follow the data wherever they lead. It is hard to know whether the authors know they are making things up or are genuinely taken in by their dark fantasies about white people. In either case, it is disappointing that authors who are capable of a subtle analysis of party politics or views on abortion should be guilty of elementary blunders when it comes to race. But it is no surprise.

Topics: , , , , , ,

Share This

Thomas Jackson
Thomas Jackson lives in Virginia and has been writing for American Renaissance for more than 15 years.
We welcome comments that add information or perspective, and we encourage polite debate. If you log in with a social media account, your comment should appear immediately. If you prefer to remain anonymous, you may comment as a guest, using a name and an e-mail address of convenience. Your comment will be moderated.
  • propagandaoftruth

    This is so full of good stuff. Well analyzed.

    Heathens, eh? Well one thing’s for sure – this “democracy” sure is messianic and totalitarian…and pretty atrocious at representing its people’s will…

    So many biting observations but I have to go live life for a bit.

  • This means that on the two issues most important to whites–immigration and race preferences

    Especially to middle to lower class whites. The infamous four million missing white voters in 2012, that is, four million people who did vote for John McCain but did not vote for Mitt Romney, are, contra to some of the lamestream conservative talking heads who talk about them, NOT doctrinaire conservatives who sat home to punish Romney for not towing the line of doctrinaire conservatism. Since there is a pretty strong county by county correlation between the drop in white voters for the Republican in 2012 compared in 2008 and Ross Perot’s total vote percentage in 1992, these are relatively independent not highly doctrinal or ideological white people, that didn’t show up to vote for Romney because he was open borders and was MIA on affirmative action.

    Drooling rednecks are politicking to hold back the darkies. Rednecks vote Republican because the party favors “anti-meritocratic advantage for traditionally dominant groups.”

    Yet, earlier in this review, we read that these same two authors in this same book noted that “rednecks” (i.e. lower class whites) have a low voter turnout because neither party really grabs them, whereas a populist/nationalist party like the FN would attract them.

    It also claims life begins at conception, but it also often permits abortion in cases of rape or incest.

    The propensity for pro life people to carve out rape and incest exceptions is due to political expediency, not morality.

    • Wirbelwind1

      “The propensity for pro life people to carve out rape and incest exceptions is due to political expediency, not morality”

      Yes..thank you for pointing this out.

    • propagandaoftruth

      The Republicans, in my view, have no clue where to fight the battle, what battles to fight.
      By abandoning

      • Jacobite2

        They would rather lose than appeal to normal white Christians — the scum of the earth for US Leftists. — almost none of whom are normal, white, or Christian.

  • Sick of it

    “Rich people want lower taxes”

    Correction – Rich people want to reduce taxes for rich people only (see the Romney tax plan).

    “The other side is dishonest, too. It claims that the Bible condemns abortion, whereas the Bible never mentions it.”

    One of the ten commandments runs contrary to this notion.

    • JohnEngelman

      Lower income whites also want lower taxes when they think the government does not protect their interests, but advances the interests of non whites at their expense. Advocating tax cuts is their way of saying “No,” to the government.

      • Sick of it

        I was referring to the capital gains tax cut. He didn’t even peddle a measure to lower taxes for everyone else.

      • LHathaway

        Perhaps poor white men vote republican more out of some belief or hope they will find a girlfriend, and lefties and leftist policies are seen to move against that, somehow. Perhaps they vote republican out of spite, or indeed, to hold down everyone else (who they might even think are being given advantages over them? Republicans better find a way to get someone to vote for them. The married type republicans vote that way, I suspect, to keep taxes down on their family.

        • Garrett Brown

          You are essentially proclaiming women only care about money lol.

          • LHathaway

            Female republicans are exclusively the married-type? Could be true. Maybe they care about their family?

          • Garrett Brown

            I certainly hope there are still a few women in America that care about family and not how much their husband brings home every two weeks.

    • Bobbala

      Jeremiah 1:4 Then the word of the LORD came unto me, saying,
      Jeremiah 1:5 Before I formed thee in the belly I knew thee; and before thou camest forth out of the womb I sanctified thee, and I ordained thee a prophet unto the nations.
      Jeremiah 1:6 Then said I, Ah, Lord GOD! behold, I cannot speak: for I am a child.
      Jeremiah 1:7 But the LORD said unto me, Say not, I am a child: for thou shalt go to all that I shall send thee, and whatsoever I command thee thou shalt speak. Jeremiah 1:8 Be not afraid of their faces: for I am with thee to deliver thee, saith the LORD.

    • Alexandra1973

      Yep. Since life begins at conception, it follows that to snuff out that life is murder.

      Some people claim that being anti-abortion and pro-death penalty is inconsistent. Not so. I believe in protecting *innocent* life. If you deliberately take someone else’s life, your own should be forfeit.

    • Bryce Armstrong

      Correction once again- Rich people want to lower taxes on themselves, they want raise them on their competition.

  • I like a lot of this analysis, but at least in the relevant range of our lifetimes, there is one fundamental line of demarcation behind the two party split, especially in Presidential politics.

    Considering the Presidential elections of 2000, 2004, 2008 and 2012, there was a perfect (for all intents and purposes of social science) (r=+0.88) correlation between these two Census Bureau definable factors combined and the percent vote for the Republican Presidential candidates:

    1. The average number of years that white women are married between the ages of 18 and 45. If one gets married on one’s 18th birthday and is still married on one’s 45th birthday and is married all the time in between, then one is married for all 27 possible years of that time period. If one is not married at all during those years of one’s life, the answer is zero. This means that this statistic for a given area will be some number between zero and 27.

    2. The average total fertility rate (TFR) of white women, i.e. her average number of children.

    Plain words, where there are traditional nuclear white families that start relatively young and have lots of kids, that’s where the Republican Presidential voters are. Where they are not, those will be blue cities, counties, states, etc. And the ability for white people to start and have families is almost entirely a function of their being able to afford doing so. Which means expensive housing hurts white affordable family formation which prevents Republican voters from happening. Affordable family formation needs affordable single residence housing in a quality (i.e. mostly if not entirely white) public school district.

    Which explains why white Texas is deep red and white San Francisco is deep blue.

    • dmxinc

      All of that analysis is trumped by the millions of immigrants that have entered our country.

      The rest is just splitting hairs.

      Foreigners now decide our elections.

      • WR_the_realist

        Yup. As millions of anchor babies reach voting age Texas will turn blue. The Democrats are salivating at the thought. And no, John Engelman, the Dems still won’t raise taxes on George Soros, Mark Zuckerberg, or Bill Gates. Why should they, when there is so much money to be taken out of the hides of middle class whites who vote Republican?

  • JohnEngelman

    Reading this book review was like turning on a light in a dimly lit room What had been barely perceived becomes clear.

  • JohnEngelman

    Politics, n. A strife of interests masquerading as a contest of principles.

    – Ambrose Bierce from “The Devil’s Dictionary”

    • Peter Connor

      Always one of my favorite works.

  • B.A_2014

    virgins?

    There aren’t many of them in the UK and Ireland.

    • Chip Carver

      Even less in the US, Israel, Mexico, and Africa. Never mind the rest of the world these days.

    • Bryce Armstrong

      Especially now that the Muzzies moved in next door.

  • LHathaway

    This looks like one of the most interesting books on politics out there. Perhaps the authors will read this review and lesson up on their ‘stereotyping’ and ‘hatred’ of poor whites for their next work? Perhaps this part of the book (where they suddenly reveal they are not open minded but derisive of whites, perhaps this part was intended to be a kind of reverse psychology?). I was looking for something like that in a round about way, keeping in mind how the lefty elites always castigate poor whites for not voting for what is in their own best interest (leftists policies of course).

    I’m going to disagree with the poll on affirmative action type preferences as shown in the chart/book. If you’re on the left side of the political fence, for whatever reason, how difficult is it for you to respond to a poll question saying you’d be OK with seeing preferences ended when they are in no danger in any way of actually being ended, however you respond to the poll?

    I happen to think affirmative action policies will only wind down once white men are denied, ‘affirmative action’, too. At that point, they will begin to end for all those eligible for affirmative action now (which is everyone who isn’t a white man). If the authors think ‘poor whites are holding everyone else down’ what will they think when affirmative action ends? They do, indeed, have a blind spot.

    As far as sexual politics is concerned, I could actually see a renewed interest in virginity if our society changes course and decides that men and boys are people too and that their concerns may also matter (and this is a paradox, because at the present time boys are likely concerned with scoring any way they might be able). I don’t know if this is a fantasy on my part or not, but I could just see a renewed interest in virginity. Anything is possible, even the unbelievable or unthinkable.

  • Messrs. Weeden and Kurzban pass this nonsense off with a straight face and without a scrap of data. They also claim that smart “heathens” like themselves live in constant fear that the white, Christian, heterosexual majority will rise up and write anti-meritocratic rules to keep them down. It would be hard to imagine a more sweeping–but fashionable–set of prejudices.

    For as long as I’ve been paying attention to what is termed in this review the “heathen left,” this has been their paranoia about the “prudish right” which fuels their goober groups’ fundraising, and that is a close cousin relationship with the left’s race paranoia which keeps the SPLC fat and happy.

    And it’s also backwards. It’s not that the prudish right is out to get the heathen left, it’s that the heathen left is out to get the prudish right. Google: “Annise Parker Houston Texas preachers sermons” and “couer dalene idaho wedding chapel.”

    The “religious right” doesn’t have the ability or power and probably not even the desire anymore to invade Boystown Chicago and run into bedrooms and pull Adam and Steve apart. The RR has a big enough battle on its hands trying to keep the political juggernaut that Adam and Steve support, give money to and vote for from paving over them, and even at that they’re at the breaking point.

  • John R

    This article says the same thing I have been saying: That blacks are not really liberals. The labels “liberal” and “conservative” really only apply to Whites. I disagree that blacks are hard to figure out. Actually, they are the easiest group to figure out. Just promise more “gibsmedat” and be sure to apologize for being White and to really be sure, attack your fellow Whites. Remember Mike Niphong, the prosecutor of “Duke Lacrosse Case” fame? He knew that all too well, and got re-elected as DA based on his malicious prosecution of the Duke Lacrosse players for a non-existent rape. Niphong had many faults, but he did understand black people.

    • mikekingjr

      I pologises fo’ bein’ Whites. Wills you leabs me alone now?

    • Bryce Armstrong

      Of course that’s all they want, what other reason could they have for liking Lincoln?

    • anony

      He also got dis-barred and “run out of town” for his malicious prosecution.

    • Anna Tree

      To quote fellow Amrener Frank_DeScushin:
      “The Conservative vs. Liberal paradigm actually applied when elections were decided by Liberal whites vs. Conservative whites. That’s no longer the case in multiracial America or in any multiracial nation. Blacks, Hispanics, and Asians are not true believers in Liberalism. Instead, they believe in racial self-interest and vote for the party that most favors their race (the Democrats). White Conservatives need to stop fooling themselves that people vote other than racial self-interest in a
      multiracial society.”

      (To what you responded, by the way: “I agree, totally. It is what I have said; Only Whites are liberals or conservatives. Non-Whites are racialists. Future elections won’t be about ideas; they will just be ethnic headcounts.”)

      • WR_the_realist

        Exactly. And that is why diversity is always a disaster for democracies. What would be a contest of competing views on the economy, environment, liberty, the size of government, and moral values simply becomes a straightforward racial competition. Why do blacks vote for the corrupt politicians they do, who in fact always ruin the black cities they are elected to run? Because they’re black.

  • M.

    In the presidential elections, it’s usually tough to choose a candidate, because, as the author suggested, most people are going to agree and disagree a lot with each candidate/party.

    But when it comes to choosing a congressperson, it’s usually their stance on immigration that influences my decision the most.

  • mikekingjr

    I am a simpleton. Read the article. All I could conclude is I do not care. Am simply preparing myself to live outside of this gobbledegoook. The debaters can have it. Realize not required to attend to this debate

    • My day job is closely related to this “gobbledygoook.”

      In spite of that, I think the days of such “gobbledygoook” being relevant to the way public affairs are discussed and public policy is enacted are numbered, and as a 37-year old, I think I’ll live long enough to see the American future history equivalent of Augustus Caesar come to pass or the American equivalent of the dissolution of the USSR happen.

      You, mikekingjr, just might be winning the future.

      • mikekingjr

        Feel like I have been beaten into independent thinking. Good grief, it took me long enough. If that’s winning, then Amen.

    • ghettovalley

      I don’t think that our votes matter anymore, at least at the national level, so voting seems to be an exercise in futility. I too am frightened of growing old in this darkening world.

      • Peter Connor

        As Mark Twain said, “If voting changed anything, they’d make it illegal.”

  • M.

    A Sweden-style Parliamentary system wouldn’t be such a bad idea. Especially if accompanied by a dismantlment of the two parties into five or six major parties: the Democratic Party would be dismantled into a liberal party, a green party, and a communist party; the Republican into a libertarian party, a conservative party, and a nationalist party. And each party would get seats, and therefore influence, proportionately to the number of votes.

    I think the voters’ persuasion would be better represented under that system.

    • ghettovalley

      I agree with you. We are given the “choice” between two preselected candidates. The two party system is a lie. Both sides are obviously pushing the same agenda, perpetual war, corporate bailouts, ever increasing taxes, the destruction of our rights. Neither the left or the right represent me. Both would gladly sell us down the river in an instant.

    • Peter Connor

      But Sweden is nevertheless a train wreck, with moslem rapists all over.

      • M.

        It is morbidly to the Left, indeed. But it’s not because of the system, but because the Swedish people have regularly elected parties that favor immigration. I think things would be different in America as most Americans want tighter border control and less immigration.

        • Peter Connor

          Voters still face the problem of no candidates to represent them, as is the case in Sweden and Denmark.

          • M.

            If you’re referring to the voters of nationalistic or anti-immigrationist persuasions, they do have parties that represent them both in Sweden (Sweden Democrats) and Denmark (Danish People’s Party).

  • JohnEngelman

    The more sex partners people have before they marry, the more likely they are to divorce, whereas when two virgins marry their chances of divorce are a very low 15 percent.

    – Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

    I have often thought so. Can anyone post a link to a study confirming this?

    • M.

      Even if there is a correlation, it doesn’t explain the cause of it.

      I’m guessing most people, especially the men, who remain virgin today until marriage don’t do it by choice. And once those men marry, they’re like, “beggars can’t be choosers”.

      • JohnEngelman

        The sexual revolution has led to the increase in the number illegitimate children, and the products of divorce. Children raised by both biological parents living together in matrimony tend to do much better in life.

        • M.

          Okay, but how does this prove that pre-marital sex increases the chances of divorce?

          • JohnEngelman

            In his book “Sexual Behavior in the Human Female,” published in 1953 Alfred Kinsey estimated that half of American women were virgins when they got married. Because he overestimated the percentage of homosexuals in the the United States, he probably underestimated the percentage of bridal virgins.

          • Anna Tree

            The difference is that they weren’t advertising it.

            So indeed the problem is not the sexual revolution per se, but the systematic destruction of the stigmas by the new albeit secular religion (like other religions before this one: destroying the beliefs of the ancestors.)
            Nowadays, premarital sex is not a secret, but a rite of passage, if not alas a number of notch on the belt for the women too.

            Check Roger Scruton’s Bring Back Stigma!

      • UncleSham

        The emotional bond caused by sex has diminishing returns. The bond it creates between two virgins having sex for the first time is going to be much stronger than the one it creates between two people who have already had a dozen or so partners each.

        • M.

          You seem to have a very high opinion of “the first time”. This baffles me.

          My first time was in my early twenties. My best buddies had just had it, and the reports weren’t great: “awkward” has been the word most used to describe it by them. You have a bike but you’re not 100% sure how to run it.

          This caused me anxiety. I didn’t have enough confidence to stay with a girlfriend from near where I lived, as I didn’t want to have a disastrous first time with a girl I’d meet again. So I went to a hooker.

          I was 21. She was in her fourties. I was like, “Okay, it’s my first time. Don’t make a big deal out of it. Let’s get it over with.” She was like, “You think you’re the first one who wants to ‘get it over with’ with a hooker?”

          The whole thing was less awkward than I expected. But it was still a disaster: two minutes. I came back three more times. The third time was great. I told her now I was ready now and confident enough in my abilities to seek a real-world girlfriend. She gave me a motherly kiss on the cheek, but didn’t make me sandwich.

          I had my real first girlfriend a few months after that. It was great. The second serious relationship, whom I met a few years later, was with my now-fiancée.

          I was not always faithful, especially during my trip to France (it doesn’t count if you’re abroad), but the relationship went on smoothly.

          So, back to the initial point, the first time isn’t that big of a deal. For most dudes, it’s something you have to get over with, to get better at, in order to be comfortable around your partner (your wife included I would guess). The fact that it went better with a hooker than it did for my pals who were (probably emotionally involved) in a relationship with regular girlfriends says it all for me.

          • UncleSham

            Of course the first time is usually awkward, it definitely was for me. However, the fact that it was also the first time for the girl I was with did make it seem more special. We eventually broke up, but I’m still glad that it happened the way it did. This may not be true for everyone, but I personally feel less of an obligation to be loyal to a woman who has already had sex with a bunch of other guys. It would hurt my pride for another man to be able to say “I f’ed your wife.” I get jealous, maybe you don’t. Considering today’s societal norms, its probably something I will have to work on.

            I agree with your last sentence.

          • M.

            “It would hurt my pride for another man to be able to say ‘I f’ed your wife.'”

            LOL, who does that! A person who says that to me is a jerk and would definitely deserve a punch just for saying that, even if he didn’t really do it. That’s just an out-of-order thing to say. I mean, it would never occur to me to track my exes’ current husbands and tell them, “Hi, sir! I f’ed your wife.” That’s just a petty thing to do.

            Statistically, my fiancée is highly likely to have had premarital sex. But I never asked about her past relationships or talked to her about mine, nor will I ever. Whenever she broached the subject, I change it. I think now she got the message. To me, “don’t ask, don’t tell” is a good policy when it comes to these topics. It’s like asking her about her first periods. Why would I want to know that?

          • UncleSham

            I didn’t mean to imply that someone would actually say that. I meant that it would bother me to have to be in the same room with or talk to a man knowing that he had sex with my wife.

      • I think it can be broken down quite simply, this is something of a “mountain out of a molehill” argument/ discussion to me.

        Virgins stay married because they simply dont know how easy it is to get sex with someone other than their spouse. People with multiple prior partners do know. Their spouse isnt the only miraculous wellspring of sex in their universe, theyve gotten it before, and they know that getting divorced/ cheating, whatever, doesnt mean they’ll be sexless for all eternity, they’ll be able to get sex again.

        Now you can break these two broad strokes down into a thousand different pieces, but there really isnt a distinct need to in my opinion. Im pretty sure, although i could be wrong, that if you were to look at divorces along with continuous years of marriage, youd see a correlation between more years, and fewer divorces, along with a distinct spike away from divorce after a certain number of years, say 10 or so, just for kicks. Ill have to do some looking as im sure a study has been done either confirming or denying this theoretical graph im describing.

        But if this correlation does exist as i’ve described, it would strongly suggest a “breaking in” period, where after x years, one is sufficiently invested in a marriage so as to not take any risks with it. And further, a virgin would be more likely to survive that breaking in period, as he has no memories of crazy sex with a half dozen other girls, he has his wife, who is steadily getting better as she learns what he enjoys, and a big mysterious (scary) world of promiscuity outside his marriage.

        The non virgin is a lot more likely to remember that feisty redhead from a few years back who was somehow able to bend over literally backwards and… well, you get the idea. He then gets a touch of wanderlust and boom, marriage over.

    • Peter Connor

      There is such a study, but you can’t post links here.

    • guest

      It would be helpful to disaggregate data along the lines of the five major personality
      traits. And along lines of “g” levels, for that matter. One group’s nourishment can be the other group’s poison.

  • IstvanIN

    This is interesting and shows one of the great flaws of our system: very few people voting for the nation’s long term interests.

  • LHathaway

    “A lot of other Americans don’t like any of this. They are family oriented, and believe sex outside of marriage undermines families. . . Sexually conservative people don’t want to lift the sanctions on fornication or adultery. . . They want to make promiscuity less likely by making it more risky–by banning abortion and making contraceptives hard to get”.

    This is nonsense. It’s good to see Jared Taylor, and the authors, too, bring this up, but no one under 90 years of age feels this way. The last time (a few) conservatives brought this up, as late as the 1960’s perhaps, that abortion destroys the family ethic, they were drowned out by a thousand Phil Donahue episodes and liberal advance in general (if not total control of education and information). The American public has more blind spots than one. America’s blind spots are not limited to race and what are the prospects for whites.

  • lib1

    Well most folks here would say their politics are their race.

    • Bryce Armstrong

      Thats not enough to make an entire movement, nor should it be.

      • Anna Tree

        It should be in our situation and it will be.
        I hope.

  • KenelmDigby

    Thomas Jackson states that ‘Whites with the least brains and education want to cut immigration’.

    A position I thought that Amren would never ever publish, a position more typical of The Economist magazine or the NYT.
    In fact it is a kick in the teeth to all the people who regular read this site and comment here. Strangely enough Thomas Jackson is a long time Amren contributor.

    Honestly, I don’t know the point Thomas Jackson is trying to make. Has anyone or any study have ever linked low IQ with anti-immigration sentiment? Surely it that was true Mr Jackson would be included in the low IQ group himself.
    In my opinion the issue has always been crystal clear. By accepting massive overwhelming non European immigration, Whites are accepting their genetic death and their eventual slavery by ethnies who hate them. If that proposition makes me low IQ, and if it makes Whites who cheer on mass immigration high IQ, then I am very proud to be described as low IQ.

    • JP Rushton

      You are taking it wrong.

      All it is saying is that people with a lot of money want more immigration to hire cheap workers while the poor people have to compete with those workers for jobs so they want less of them.

      Sure, the rich have a higher IQ than the poor, but that is just the economic reasoning for less immigration. I personally want less immigration partially because of the economic reasons but mostly because I don’t want the US to turn into a third world slum.

      • LHathaway

        Yes, but the richest whites were also very much against immigration. Almost to the point that poor whites were.

      • Anna Tree

        Also they don’t care about academia’s point of view and therefore don’t fall for political correctness, moral relativism, wishful thinking and other liberal leftist dogmas.
        They just say what they think.
        Liberal leftist may think the same but they don’t say it because they don’t want and have to: they live in nice and white gated communities.On the contrary the poorer whites are the ones who live and lived the most around diversity. They are and were also in class with those third worlder immigrants.
        They know the truth and they suffer from it the most.

        So I don’t think it is only for economical reason: they/we (read Garrett Brown’s post a bit below lol) have maybe lower IQ but enough smart, wise and with common sense to realize that races are different: Jared Taylor may have coined race realism and racialism (?), but those whites knew about it from the start, they just didn’t need a name for it.

    • LHathaway

      Thomas Jackson is a pen name Jared Taylor uses. I read that on a lefty site. I don’t know but I suspect it’s likely true.

      • Usually Much Calmer

        Robert Putnam.

    • Carney3

      We can’t very well present ourselves as fearlessly and ruthlessly following the truth wherever it leads, and scorn non-whites and liberals who reject reality on racial differences, while also whining about our own precious sensitive feeeeeewings when presented with facts WE don’t like. The reality remains that downscale whites are more likely to oppose immigration.

      • Shouldn’t they?

        After all, the option to oppose mass non-white immigration for the reasons of racial or tribal well being has been taken away from us, because fascist Nazi six million Jews. So of course “downscale” whites are going to oppose it because of economic reasons.

  • Garrett Brown

    Did Tom Jackson essentially just state we lack education and have low IQs?

    • Sick of it

      That is the typical liberal position on ‘racists’ which, of course, overlooks their ignorance of even basic geography, let alone economics. Or human nature for that matter. They are ignorant, arrogant children who think they know everything, much like a teenager in my family.

  • Garrett Brown

    “A lot of other Americans don’t like any of this. They are family oriented, and believe sex outside of marriage undermines families. The authors concede that they are right about that: The more sex partners people have before they marry, the more likely they are to divorce, whereas when two virgins marry their chances of divorce are a very low 15 percent. ”

    I love being right on issues like this. Men and women, have respect for yourselves, stop sleeping around every Friday night you go out.

  • curri

    STOP MASS IMMIGRATION! BECAUSE ETHNIC CLEANSING IS INHUMANE!

    Any graphic would be considered racist. Also, probably have to be politically aware and have an IQ of at least 100 to get that. I wonder how many people don’t get even get what “code word” means.

  • You’re talking about a “hitting the fan” scenario, I’m talking about conventional electoral politics and democratic republicanism yielding to an autocracy of some sort. Who knows, they might wind up being one and the same.

  • ricpic

    Why use the term “human capital” instead of income? The inference is that if my income is twice yours I’m worth twice as much as you in every way. A purely materialistic view of humans.

    • Carney3

      You misunderstand. The term “human capital” includes factors such as education, social and behavioral training, knowledge of how to navigate bureaucracies, and access to social circles. A clergyman, college professor, political activist, or government bureaucrat may be highly educated, with multiple advanced degrees, but earn less than a union factory worker, plumber, coal miner, or construction worker. In turn, the lower human capital of that blue collar white man and his family and community, who might have a higher income, means that he is likely to have less power to shape government policy and cultural norms, less ability to be able to avoid trouble with the IRS or law enforcement in the same situation, fewer connections such as friends and family who are in a position to be able to call on for help if in difficulty, etc.

  • JohnEngelman

    Rich people want lower taxes

    – Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

    This does not explain why many rich people vote Democrat.

    • M.

      More immigration and cheap labor I would guess.

  • JohnEngelman

    It is common to think that most people absorb their parents’ religion, and that religion determines views on sex. The authors suggest otherwise. They are aware of the extent to which genes influence this kind of behavior, and even cite longitudinal studies suggesting that it doesn’t make much difference how you are reared; promiscuous people will leave the church, and people who are family-oriented will find a church even if they weren’t reared in one.

    – Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

    This is one of the most interesting parts of the book.

    Vladimir Lenin said, “Give us the child for 8 years and it will be a Bolshevik forever.” This has been said of religions too. It will only be true of the religion or political ideology satisfies deep seated aspects of a person’s psyche. Those deep seated aspects will be mainly caused genetically.

    • Anna Tree

      Watch the Vice video about ISIS: no need for 8 years,they need them at 8 years old…

  • JohnEngelman

    when two virgins marry their chances of divorce are a very low 15 percent

    – Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

    Thomas Jackson, If you read this post, please reply to this comment with a link to something that verifies this. I am confident that this is true, but I would like for it to be verified.

    This explains why the sexual revolution has been harmful to our society.

    • guest

      Somehow, I expected to see E. O. Wilson’s name crop up in this issue of sexual mores. The traditional view was simply that human sexuality had to be significantly
      “de-primated” for the well being of society. Wilson’s work lends a noteworthy degree
      of support. Public condemnation of excessive body exposure, carnal language, etc.
      simply managed to make the intimacy of the marriage bed all that more exclusive and bonding. The wisdom and vindication of contemporary sexuality by patriots is
      far far more a product of what is sense evident and right now OK than it is something that is truly perceived and appreciated. In a word, it is s h a l l o w. The success of full throttle sexuality (grandmother called it “lust”) is a reality maybe for one out of
      20 of its practitioners. Take them odds to Vegas to play and you’ll be hitchhiking back home.

  • Lind Blythe

    Heathens?
    Ooooh we’re getting naughty…

  • Ernst Stavro Blofeld

    I know,plenty of real heathens who would object the urban elves calling themselves heathen.

  • Lord Sandwich

    This is an interesting article. People’s true motives are expressed mostly through the prism of political correctness. For example, many conservatives note that blacks would prosper more in a growth focused economy and are kept on the “plantation” by the democrat welfare system. Thus, they would be more prosperous if they voted Republican. Thing is, many blacks don’t want prosperity in the sense of access to jobs. What they want, is an easy existence even if that means less prosperity. Inability to express those forbidden truths results in various political miscalculations. Whereas, Obama knows exactly what he’s doing handing out food stamps like candy. We will never beat Santa Claus while we’re waiting for the majority of non-whites to adopt the motivations of whites.

    • The fallacy in that argument by many conservatives is that GOP lawmakers usually end up beholden to big business interests which want to flood the US with “cheap” labor.

    • JohnEngelman

      From 1920 to 2002 there was nearly always more economic growth under Democratic presidents. From 1933 to 2008 there was nearly always more job creation under Democratic presidents. Even the stock market has performed better under Democratic presidents.

      • Lord Sandwich

        I lived through Carter and Reagan. I choose Reagan. The Democrats of today have gone over the leftist cliff. They have no resemblance to the Democrats of the past.

  • Why do we vote as we do?

    That’s a simple one to answer. Some people vote for “free” goodies for themselves, while others vote to try to avoid paying for other people’s “free” stuff.

    • JohnEngelman

      Most Republicans vote for tax cuts for themselves, and for the preservation of government spending programs that benefit them. This is why Republican politicians have not been able to cut government spending.

  • fgbrunner3

    Surprise! Liberals are self centered narcissists.

  • Massif1

    Blacks think collectively when it comes to dealing with other ethnic groups. Tribal mentality helps them fight the common enemy – “others.” Individually, blacks are hunting and backstabbing each other.

  • Erikxyz

    This is an interesting explanation of why we are where we are, but how do we get from here to where we want to be?

  • dd121

    If we are supposed to be motivated by self-interest why did any white ever support the notion of Affirmative Action?

    • JohnEngelman

      Whites who support affirmative action are motivated by a white liberal guilt complex.

  • Sweet63

    “It claims that the Bible condemns abortion, whereas the Bible never
    mentions it. It also claims life begins at conception, but it also often
    permits abortion in cases of rape or incest”

    Uh, which “other side” is this? I never heard anyone assert the former, and the latter is just a compromise position for politicians.

  • johningermany

    I think they should wait for a giant blizzard to render their decision in Ferguson.

  • WR_the_realist

    It is never possible for me to vote in my best interests, because the choice is always between a Democrat and a Republican.

  • adplatt126

    Promiscuous, i.e. good looking.

  • JohnEngelman

    I have not read this book yet, but I certainly intend to. I wonder if it explains why two people can have identical economic interests, and yet disagree profoundly about economic policy. I have known people with virtually the same jobs in similar or the same companies who made virtually the same incomes, and yet one was an economic libertarian, while the other was a democratic socialist, or even a Marxist.

    I suspect a lot has to do with whether or not one likes his job, and whether or not one is confident in his ability to advance. Education, and the family income of the family one grew up in matters too.

    Consider two people working for a call center. One is the son of a doctor and a scientist who could not pass the bar exam. He dislikes his job, and does not believe that any degree of hard work will achieve for him a position comparable to the position he aspired to as a lawyer.

    The second was raised in poverty, perhaps by a single mother, and never went to college. The second likes his job and his boss, and believes that he can advance to a supervisor’s job after several more years of conscientious service to the company.

    The first of these two is likely to vote Green or Democrat. The second is likely to vote Libertarian or Republican.

  • JohnEngelman

    And why is it that when policy runs counter to majority interests, it always veers off in a liberaldirection? Why are there no policies that are more conservative than the majority wants? The authors–who cheerfully admit to being heathens–say it is because elites make policy, and elites, whether Democrat or Republican, tilt Left.

    – Thomas Jackson, American Renaissance, October 24, 2014

    For years public opinion surveys have indicated majority support for higher taxes on the rich. Taxes have not risen for the rich.